Personal protective equipment (PPE) or safety gear can reduce common workplace safety concerns for many different professions. Workers in the healthcare and manufacturing industries often require specific types of PPE to perform their jobs safely, for example. The same is absolutely true of construction professionals.
Those who work in construction may require safety harnesses to protect them from the risk of a fall. They may need protective eyewear and hard hats to limit the risk posed by falling materials. Employers may even need to provide respirators in cases where workers will have exposure to toxic elements, like asbestos, when working on an existing property. Workers in the construction industry in California may have an easier time staying safe on the job when they understand the rules that apply to necessary equipment for their protection.
Employers may have to provide certain equipment
California has rules intended to protect employees from unnecessary risk on the job. State law and court rulings affirm that often employers have to provide certain necessary protective equipment for construction workers based on the specific hazards of a project. Unfortunately, employers may deny that they have such an obligation or may lie to workers and tell them that they do not need to use certain safety equipment on a job site. They may intentionally avoid disclosing hazards so that workers won’t know to request certain types of PPE. Other companies may provide gear, but choose the cheapest PPE they can find or pressure workers into foregoing the use of PPE.
PPE only serves its purpose with consistent use
Employers need to not only provide protective gear but must also allow employees to consistently use it. Sometimes, the culture at a company puts such pressure on workers regarding speed that they perform their jobs at that they feel like they must sacrifice personal safety for efficiency because every time they tether in their tools, they must spend a minute or two setting up their safety equipment.
Yet, thankfully, seeking legal guidance and learning more about one’s workplace rights can make it easier for California employers to demand safe workplaces and compensation after a preventable injury.